A certified copy of a birth certificate may be used for retirement purposes, passports, social services, school enrollment, and other legal purposes.
NOTICE: Due to the FEDERAL REAL ID Act, documents (including a certified copy of a birth certificate) may be required to renew your Maryland Driver’s License or Identification Card. Click here to find out if you need to bring REAL ID documents for your next Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) visit.
The MVA will accept a U.S. Birth Certificate as proof of identity. A U.S. Birth Certificate says “Certificate of Live Birth” at the top and has impressed seals in the bottom corners along with water marks. The MVA will not accept documents issued by a hospital, notification of birth, birth registration cards, and foreign birth certificates.
Who Can Apply
If you were born in Maryland January 1, 1939 or later, and are:
- An individual requesting his/her own birth certificate
- A parent named on the certificate (A foster care appointment is not acceptable; proof of guardianship must be submitted.)
- Representative of the individual or a parent named on the certificate (The representative must have a letter signed by the person, parent, or guardian, and certified by a notary public, stating that the representative has permission to obtain a copy of the certificate.)
- Court of Law
Call the Baltimore Office of Vital Records at 410-764-3038 if you:
- Were born before January 1, 1939
- Need a birth certificate for a deceased person
If you were born in another state:
- Vital Records in Every State
- Call us at 301-600-1029 and we can give you the telephone numbers for the other states.
How to Apply
Mondays - Friday, 8:30 am- 4:00 pm, closed for lunch from 12:00pm - 1:00 pm. No appointment needed!
To order online, visit www.vitalchek.com.
To order by mail, visit Maryland Department of Health Vital Records. Cost is $10.
ID Requirements & Processing Time
To receive same day service, you must present a valid, unexpired, government-issued photo ID displaying issued and expiration dates.
Acceptable photo IDs:
- Current driver’s license
- Current U.S. Passport
- Current U.S. Military ID
If you cannot provide a valid photo ID you will not be able to receive your birth certificate the same day. To have your birth certificate mailed to you, you must provide 2 different alternative documents. At least one of these documents must contain your current mailing address.
Acceptable documents (must have 2):
- Pay stub
- Current car registration
- Bank statement
- Letter from a government agency requesting a vital record
- Lease/rental agreement
- Utility bill with current address
- Copy of income tax return/W-2 form
- Social Security Card
The cost is $20 per birth certificate. We accept cash, check (made out to Frederick County Health Department), Discover, MasterCard or Visa credit cards.
Maryland law requires that all births occurring in the State be registered with the Maryland Department of Health (MD Health-General Code Ann. 4-208). Registration of your child’s birth establishes the facts of birth and will be used throughout your child’s lifetime for a variety of legal purposes. When a baby is born outside of an institution, the local health officer or designee of the jurisdiction where the birth occurred is required to attempt to verify the facts regarding the birth.
State of Maryland Certified Nurse Midwives and Licensed Direct Entry Midwives now have the authority to complete registration for home births occurring in Frederick County. If you were in care with one of these professionals, please contact them for further instructions.
- If your home birth was not planned and you or your baby were not hospitalized after the birth, you may follow up with your health care provider to complete the form below.
- If you do not have a health care provider, please contact 301-600-3326 within 72 hours of the birth for more information.
- If the facts of the birth can be verified, the local health officer will sign the birth record and file the record with the Department of Health.
- If the facts regarding a birth cannot be verified by the local health officer, parents may seek an order from a court of competent jurisdiction that lists the facts about the birth and orders the Secretary of the Department of Health to create the birth record.
Pre-registration is available at the Frederick County Health Department and simplifies the registration process that will take place after the baby is born.
The necessary documents from a licensed health care provider would include:
- Verification of the Facts of Birth Form
- New Mother Worksheet - Must be completed by Health Department staff
- Certificate of Live Birth Form - Must be completed by Health Department staff
- Certificate of Multiple Live Births Form - Must be completed by Health Department staff
Please contact the Health Department at 301-600-3326 for help with filling out these forms.
Creating A New Birth Certificate: A person born in Maryland, whose birth was never registered, may apply for a delayed certificate of birth. Contact the Division of Vital Records at 410-764-3038 for further information. A new birth certificate may also be prepared in the case of:
- Adjudication of paternity
- Sex change*
- Diagnosis of an intersex condition*
- Commemorative birth certificates suitable for framing are available. Proceeds from these certificates benefit the Children’s Trust Fund.Click here for more information.